Monday, November 26, 2012

Home | Christmas tree

Boys in plaid & the smell of a fresh Christmas tree filling your home. Mmm I love Christmas.

This is the best time of year.

Little one | Tights for boys.

If you have a little boy to buy for this Christmas, please do the world a favor and get him a pair of these.

Dear Little Titans, what a good idea, and very well executed.


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Bruno | The "Stopper"

Grandmother (Cody's grandmother), Bruno's new crush, says that Grandaddy calls this magical little thing a "stopper."And since we've been spending all week with Grandmother, it seems only appropriate to call it that today. This guy Bruno refused to take one until I bought a new, considerably less hoity-toity variety this weekend, and now it's his best friend. He's like a new baby... totally into cuddling, and today he fell asleep on the couch next to me. No bouncing, humming, or darkened room! So, in the spirit of Thanksgiving, which was obviously several days ago now... I am going to shout it to the rooftops how thankful I am that this guy decided to take a pacifier just in time for our 11 hour trip from Durham to Cincinnati yesterday. He was a champ, and I feel spoiled. Now we're snug in Cincinnati, safely indoors, avoiding this cold weather like the plague. I actually forgot it could get this cold, which probably explains why I didn't bring a winter coat or my warm boots. Yep, spoiled. Pacifiers and the North Carolina sunshine will ruin me.

P.S. Christmas socks oh yes.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Husband | Saving the day one cup of coffee at a time

Nothing lifts my spirits like a hot cup of coffee or freshly brewed tea. Tonight, Cody, Sebastian, Bruno and I went to pick up a Christmas tree, and popped into Target to get some more lights. I went in first, and waited outside the in-house Starbucks, looking at their display of seasonal flavors. I always notice this sign because I like to think about what flavor sounds the best as I begin my shopping. One would think this would be torture, and I have no idea why I do it, but tonight, Cody walked in and promptly greeted me with, "What flavor do you want?"

This man knows the way to my heart.

"Caramel Creme Brulee, please!"

And it. was. good.

P.S. I found this art print by Karolin Schnoor via Emma Dime. I am completely in love with it. It's called "Grudge" which is pretty sad, but it's also lovely. I like to think they made up after a few minutes. You can buy some of Karolin Schnoor's work here.

A peek at our family photos

Last week we had the pleasure of being photographed by the talented Casey Elia. Goodness she is awesome. Here are a few of her shots that I love to pieces.


Friday, November 16, 2012

Home | Still kickin' (but mostly just Bruno)

An update in bullet points because it would take me an hour to update you in narrative form:

1. A new arrangement in our apartment! we switched the play area with the dining area, and it makes all of us positively giddy. Seb has room to breathe and play, and we now have a cozy little dining nook.

2. Bruno is 5 months old this weekend. His skills include a nice cough-laugh, which he enjoys using when we're in situations where silence would be most appreciated, vigorous flailing and kicking, drooling, smiling, regular laughing, noting when his toys drop or become unreachable—followed by disgruntled crying—and being an unarguable mama's boy to the extreme. I love my fat man.

3. I bought some new sneakers for Sebastian yesterday, and I'm wondering how his feet got so big overnight... I also find myself talking to him like an adult, and what's more astounding—him responding like an adult! ex. Me from the bathroom, "Hey Seb? I'm going to be in the bathroom putting on my makeup if you need anything, K?" Seb, nonchalantly, "K!"

Call the police somebody stole my baby.

4. New chore chart for Seb. I'm pretty proud of my skillz with the crayons. This thing is going to be so nifty. It's framed (plastic not glass!), so he can cross things off daily with a dry erase marker. I think I should get brilliant mama points for this one. Also, any simple daily chore recommendations to add?

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Mama | Always beautiful

So often I am struck dumb when I look at my children. They are so beautiful! And the astounding thing is that I feel like they get more beautiful every day. It seems impossible, and yet it happens. I've seen it. Sebastian, at 2.5 years old, has this beauty that I can't describe. And you know, the thing about this beauty is that it's so different from what we think of as beautiful, because so much of what makes my children beautiful is their personalities, and even "imperfections"—the way they laugh, their chubby cheeks, crazy bedhead (or in Bruno's case, lack of any potential for bedhead), the way their eyes light up when the understand something new, when they need alone time, or when you just look at them and they grin so wide. It's a million little things, and simply this light that shines through their sweet faces. I'm convinced that even if they were the ugliest, homeliest little creatures in all the earth, they would be every bit as beautiful.

So why don't we see that beauty as easily or as often as we get older? That same soul is there, but I think we get good at hiding it, losing our curiosity and our vulnerability. I think that one of the most important jobs of a parent is protecting that curiosity and vulnerability that our children display with such purity.

Obviously, a million and one things could be said on this topic, but today I just wanted to write a little something down. A little reminder to me, and I hope, to my children one day, that they—we—are beautiful because of our souls, not because we know how to present ourselves, or do our makeup, or style our hair.

Thanks, Jo, for that picture of Bruno!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Home | We love our family!!! — part two

Yesterday was a sad day.

My mom and youngest sister, Joanna, left to go back home to Ohio. I think it was the best visit we've had with them here in N.C. I tend to get stressed by the throwing off of my routine and the extra clutter since we have such a small place, but this time I didn't think twice about all the suitcases, or the fact that Seb took his nap around 3 every day instead of his usual 12-1 p.m. It was so refreshing to have them here. Mom acts like everyone's mom, including Seb's and Bruno's, which is fine by me. She sometimes even slips for a second and refers to herself as "mama" when talking to Seb, haha! But this isn't surprising since she still has kids at home, even if her youngest is 14 now. In addition to all the babysitting, she did an epic amount of cleaning. I always try to get her to slow down when she's here, but she shows her love by helping, which means she must love us a lot. We have a clean shower, scoured sinks, clean floors, absolutely no laundry left to do (we should have counted how many loads she did... 20 maybe? I had no idea we had so many things to wash...), and she even stitched up the hole in Cody's favorite sweater. Add to that several outrageously delicious home cooked meals + homemade pumpkin spice lattes and desserts, compliments of Joanna, and you can get a fraction of an idea of how awesome our week was.

We missed you, Daddy/Papaw! You have to come see us for a whole week in January or February.

P.S. Joanna made this and it was amazing. It was like a giant butterscotch cinnamon roll.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Home | We love our family!!! — part one

Cody's parents visited two weekends ago, bringing with them a healthy dose of joy, what with Mamaw and her "Mary Poppins bag" that never seems to empty of fantastic treats and toys just perfect for Seb's inqusitive mind. PawPaw wrestled with Seb just like Cody does, and helped us "adults" buy new cell phones (THANK YOU!), and Mamaw and PawPaw both treated us to a fun morning at the Life and Science Museum (train ride included!) and lots of tasty food. Thanks for cooking, Mamaw!

It was such a treat and blessing for all of us. I'm not sure how I could have gotten through my cold without them, they were like a balm for Seb's little spirit, and although I'm not sure Cody got more work done than usual, it was certainly nice for him to have a change of pace. We can't wait for Thanksgiving!

Pictures from PawPaw's iPhone:

Home | Sticking close

This post was written on Friday, 1-2-12. Grandparent posts coming right up!

Things have been a bit unsteady for Seb lately. We've been battling colds, and his poor little spirit doesn't handle family coming and going very well. We assure him that mama and dada are staying with him, but it seems there's a little part of him that's not quite sure. So I've been sticking close this last week. Last night I ran upstairs to our neighbors for no more than 5 minutes and he waited on Cody's lap, so upset that I was gone. He half laughed, half cried, when I came back down. "Mama coming back!" was the relieved exclamation with which I was greeted.

But as exhausting as it's been, what with coughing myself to sleep nearly every night this week, and manning numerous nap and bedtimes by myself, I am so thankful that I chose to stay home with my boys. I often say that I'm fortunate enough, or blessed to be able to stay home with them, but I say it differently now because although those statements are certainly true, I also want to recognize that it's not always easy to be a stay at home mom. I sacrifice a lot to stay with them. We sacrifice a lot for me to stay at home. I'm sure you can relate. But as true as that is, man, the reward of being able to give everything to these little souls is so great. I wouldn't trade it.

This week, Bruno rolled over for the first time. He struggled might and mane to do it, but now he's a pro. On All Hallows Eve, I bounced Bruno to sleep in a candlelit room, while Sebastian rested on the couch,  not willing to go to sleep yet. It was a strange night, and completely out of routine for us, but I could tell that Seb really needed to just be for a little while, so we listened to the Winnie the Pooh soundtrack and rested in the dark.

Such sweet days with my boys—my boys who are growing much too fast. Today we found out that 4 mo. old Bruno is the average height and weight of a 6 mo. old. I love my big boy and my toddler to pieces.